07 June 2006

How do you integrate information literacy into Faculties that offer ‘structured’ programs?

Quote this Post - “Begin—to begin is half the work, let half still remain; again begin this and thou wilt have finished.” ~ Decimus Magnus Ausonius

How do you integrate information literacy into Faculties that offer ‘structured’ programs?
So, you have an opportunity, now it’s down to planning and doing:
Planning with Faculty staff in ‘structured’ programs:
1. Use your University Teaching and Learning philosophy as a guide
2. Does your library have a Teaching and learning framework and plan?
3. Do you know the Infolit Standards for your University Council, or have a library organisation which has endorsed infolit standards.ie. In Australia we use the Information literacy Standards endorsed by the Council of Australian University Libraries & Australian and New Zealand Institute for Information Literacy (ANZIIL) known as the ANZ Information literacy framework http://www.caul.edu.au/info-literacy/
4. Use this as your framework, look at the learning outcomes, decide which year to introduce each competency or standard, I prefer competency, (may vary depending on discipline), keep in mind that it is a ‘framework’ and there may be gaps between competencies and learning outcomes, also it is limited in providing a framework for assessment.
5. When choosing infolit course content, writing learning outcomes and assessment grids, be sure to make sure there are no gaps, work backwards from assessment (all of the competencies & outcomes you are going to assess, then choose content and then choose learning outcomes). This will ensure that you are not assessing anything that hasn’t been covered and that you are assessing real learning outcomes.
6. You will need TIME, plenty of butchers paper, or use MS Powerpoint to Storyboard your ideas, or MS Excel to ‘spreadsheet’ plan if you like this method. I have the Australian Standards compiled in an excel file, completed in March this year. If you would like to use this gratis, please contact me.
7. Are there any online course management tools which you can use to facilitate the ‘incorporating’ of the infolit competencies week by week with course content. Tools such as Blackboard have been used by some Australian universities. This tool has the facility to include ‘tests’ week by week to see how the students are going.
8. Create a pool or ‘database’ of online assessment questions – use all of your teaching team librarians to do this; give each person a standard, or criteria and ask for six different quiz questions and answers. Ensure that you ‘log’ these in some central database in the library, so all librarians can ‘use’ these at anytime in infolit planning. For example: Standard 2.2 Constructs and implements effective search strategies:
Which boolean operator do you use to ‘combine’ terms and narrow results:
[AND ] [ OR ] [ NOT ]

9. Does your library have an online tutorial which is based on the Information literacy standards? Can it be ‘linked’ to from within online course management programs such as Blackboard, or are portions of it suitable – this is the beauty of a ‘modularised’ online tutorial.
10. Some institutions use the term ‘Workbook’ when incorporating infolit into curriculum and this usually is associated with ‘implanted’ infolit, and while better than nothing is not the ideal method. If you find that a separate module is what you are offered, call it something ‘inspiring’ rather than a workbook. How about “Information Competency Module” or “Information Research Basics” or something else that inspires learning, or ‘Information Highway module’ or ‘Information Research Module’. Get those creative juices flowing!
11. The beauty of structured programs is that you can ‘stage’ or introduce at different year ‘levels’ the different information competencies to form an information competency scaffold tailored to your discipline. Information scaffold was coined by Brabazon, Tara (2004).
"Bachelor of Arts (Google): Graduating to information literacy," Keynote Paper, IDATER on-line conference on e-learning in Science and Design Technology, Loughborough University, August 2004 (URL: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/cd/docs_dandt/research/ed/elearning/Lead%20papers/BrabazonPDF.pdf)

I personally like the term - Information Competencies Scaffold. What do you call it at your institution?


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